After Stepmom of Missing Harmony Montgomery Is Released on Bail, Mom Asks, 'Where Is the Justice?'

Harmony Montgomery vanished in 2019, but it took two years until she was reported missing

Harmony Montgomery
Harmony Montgomery. Photo: Crystal Sorey

The stepmom of Harmony Montgomery, the New Hampshire girl who vanished in 2019 but wasn't reported missing for more than two years, was released from jail on bail Friday — a decision that has left the girl's mom angry and bewildered.

Judge Amy B. Messer ordered the release of Kayla Montgomery, 31, following a bail hearing Thursday in Hillsborough Superior Court in Manchester, N.H., according to court documents obtained by PEOPLE.

Kayla had been in jail since January on one felony count of theft by deception and two misdemeanor counts of welfare fraud.

Kayla Montgomery
Kayla Montgomery. Manchester NH Police/Facebook

In April, she was hit with new criminal charges of receiving or obtaining a rifle and a shotgun that Adam Montgomery — from whom she is now estranged — allegedly stole in 2019. She has pleaded not guilty to all the charges.

Adam, 32, who is being held on charges of assault against Harmony in 2019, has additionally been charged with eight criminal counts in the gun case. Adam has pleaded not guilty to the charges.

There is no evidence of a connection between the stolen firearms and the disappearance of Harmony, according to a statement from the New Hampshire Attorney General's Office obtained by PEOPLE. Neither suspect has been charged in connection with Harmony's disappearance.

Kayla Montgomery is led into court for proceedings at Hillsborough Superior Court, in Manchester, N.H. Kayla Montgomery, the stepmother of Harmony Montgomery, who disappeared in 2019 at age 5, appeared in court for a bail hearing on unrelated weapons charges. Montgomery said in a jailhouse call played in court Thursday, May 5, 2022 that she still loves her estranged husband, who's jailed on charges related to the child's wellbeing
Kayla Montgomery. Charles Krupa/AP/Shutterstock

In Messer's ruling, which was obtained by PEOPLE, the judge ordered that Kayla be released on a $5,000 unsecured appearance bond, which means that instead of paying right away, she "must meet the other conditions of her bail order and must appear at court when ordered to do so or her bail will be revoked," a court spokesperson tells PEOPLE.

These conditions include daily physical check-ins with the Manchester Police Department, continuing with substance abuse treatment, and having no contact, direct or indirect, or through a third party, with Adam, according to the bail order, which was obtained by PEOPLE.

Mom: 'Hardest Thing I've Ever Gone Through'

Harmony's mother, Crystal Sorey, 31, of Massachusetts, tells PEOPLE she is a recovering heroin addict who hasn't used drugs in almost three years. She last saw Harmony on a FaceTime call on Easter in 2019.

Following Kayla's release, she told PEOPLE, "It is absolute BS, I really feel like not enough is being done to find my daughter's whereabouts."

"It just baffles me," she adds. "Where is the justice for Harmony? Where are all the promises that were made in the beginning, when Harmony's case came out?"

"Nobody has gotten any answers," she adds. "This is the hardest thing I've ever gone through in my life, and I've been through quite a few hard situations in my life."

Harmony Montgomery
Harmony Montgomery. Crystal Sorey

When Kayla was arrested on the felony gun charges, Harmony's uncle hoped that answers on Harmony's whereabouts would be forthcoming.

"Hopefully that gets her to talk," the uncle, Tim Flanagan Jr., told PEOPLE. "'Cause I really believe there's no way she doesn't know what happened."

Couple Was Seen with Other Children, But Not Harmony

Harmony was not reported missing for two years after she was last seen, according to a timeline in the case that Manchester police released in January.

Authorities say Harmony, then 5, appeared to be living with Adam, Kayla and the couple's two other children when the family was evicted from a residence on Gilford Street in Manchester on Nov. 27, 2019.

Harmony Montgomery

"Multiple individuals" reported seeing the girl with Adam and Kayla in the days that followed, according to the January statement. But between Dec. 6-10, 2019, the couple was seen only with the two children they share — and not Harmony.

"This information leads police to believe that it was sometime during this window of approximately Nov. 28–Dec. 10, 2019, that Harmony Montgomery disappeared," said the statement.

In her order, Messer wrote that Kayla "has a limited criminal history" and that her "contacts in the State are significant. The defendant is a nearly lifelong resident of New Hampshire and her children and extended family members are here. The defendant has also been participating in medically assisted treatment for substance use disorder while at the jail and intends to continue in treatment if released."

Harmony Montgomery
Harmony Montgomery. Manchester Police Department

The order also mentioned a call Kayla made from jail to Adam's father, in which she asked the father to pass along a message to her estranged husband that she still loves him, is there for him and that she is "not going [anywhere]."

The judge wrote in the order that while this call shows that Kayla violated the court's no contact order with Adam, it still is not grounds "to deny her bail request altogether." But, the judge wrote, if there is any further contact with Adam, either directly or indirectly, bail could immediately be revoked.

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